Improving pediatric residency in-training exam scores can be challenging. In this PBR article, we look at “tech” and whether or not new “tech” is better than tried and true methods.
I’ve always been a huge advocate of embracing technology as it relates to medicine and accelerating learning. Especially when your time is almost nonexistent, like when you're in pediatric residency, the speed with which you can locate information is a valuable asset.
The growth and the availability of e-books and online study materials have certainly expanded the number of resources available to medical students and residents. Traditional study materials, where a student spends vast amounts of time pouring over textbooks, are quickly being replaced by electronic and digital resources.
Pediatrics Board Review (PBR) has tried to embrace many of the advantages offered by technology, so both the PBR Core Study Guide and the PBR Question and Answer book have been made available for access on iPads, iPhones and via your desktop computer.
There’s a growing body of evidence which indicates that the brain absorbs information from transmitted light differently to information received from reflected light. The visual cortex processes Click Here And Continue Reading…
Propinqua-what? And what does that have to do with improving in-training exam scores?
The word is PROPINQUITY!
In a recent article titled, “Tips #1 & 2 – Start Early & Work Smart!” I talk about the direct correlation between residency in-training exam scores and the number of hospital admissions a resident does. I also discuss a study which shows that in-training exam scores do in fact act as indicators of a resident’s ability to pass the board certification exam.
In this article, I’ll talk about improving in-training exam scores by using propinquity. I was recently introduced to the idea of propinquity while reading Influencer: The Power to Change Anything, by Kerry Patterson. The book discusses strategies used by some of the most influential people around the world to influence change in all different aspects of life.
Webster defines propinquity as “nearness in place or time.” In the book, one of the sources of influence is the environment. The idea here is that that in many situations, you can effect change by modifying the environmental relationship of one variable with another. By altering the relationship of place or time between variables.
Now, let’s think of an example of how this concept might be utilized within pediatric residency programs to increase in-training exam scores.
Meet this set of twin sisters, Dr. Tracy Smith and Dr. Penny Smith. Both went to the same college. Both went to the same medical school. Both scored similarly on the MCAT as well as their USMLE Step exams. Their scores were never amazing, but they did well enough to pass. They’re both now pediatric residents, but Click Here And Continue Reading…
It's a pediatric board review FORUm, but it's through Facebook! Pediatrics Board Review has created a Facebook Page as well as a Facebook Group. There are two primary differences between these. The page can be liked by anyone and posts can be seen by anyone. PBR's Facebook Group is a forum area for the PBR community to get together and ask each other questions about the board exam, pediatrics and the content in the PBR study guides. If you have an active PBR membership, you can join the CREW! All posts are strictly private can only be seen by other PBR members of the group.
WE ARE TOO ISOLATED AND DEPRESSED!
Studying for the American Board of Pediatrics initial certification exam can be a daunting experience and can make a person EXTREMELY lonely. Especially for the many Click Here And Continue Reading…
Being the author of the PBR and interacting with so many pediatricians is really a blessing, but it also comes some heartache. I tend to have much more interaction with pediatricians that have failed the initial certification exam prior to finding PBR. Responding to all of those emails can be tiring, and often it’s just downright depressing. People share their struggles with me openly, and it’s impossible not to get emotional and involved. I continue to do it for PBR members, though, because based on the results people have had, I know I can help.
BUT, along with the feelings of sadness associated with being PBR’s author, there are also those amazing and often surprising moments that make it all worth it. For example, after failing the peds initial board certification exam FOUR TIMES, Dr. Vincenzo decided to use PBR to study for the 2012 boards. On 12/11/2012 he heard some wonderful news, and when he shared it with me… It literally gave me goose bumps because it represents everything I want for pediatricians seeking board certification. “Efficiency In Studying So You Can Live Your Life.”
Here’s what Dr. V had to say: Click Here And Continue Reading…
Pediatric board exam results have varied over the years from the mid 70s to the high 80s due to changes in the ABP's scoring. Higher pass rates are achieved through planning and structure. For me, I am SO glad that I had this year's “results day” off. There was no warning at all; just BAM! It was such a roller coaster of emotions as the emails started pouring in that I’m sure I would not have been able to give my patients the attention they deserve.
I was flooded with emails thanking me for creating PBR, and also for making myself so available this past year. For many, it was their first time taking the exam, I’m still collecting the numbers, but almost everyone passed if it was their first attempt.
I’d love to know you did so PLEASE submit your results HERE (should take less than 30 seconds): https://www.pediatricsboardreview.com/pediatrics-board-review-results-survey
For others, it was their first time PASSING the exam after MULTIPLE attempts. Given that a “failed peds board exam” email always triggers sadness as I'm reminded of my own first experience with the boards, I especially felt connected to these docs' emails.
Although the ABP has refused my request to release statistics on how likely it is for repeat test-takers to pass the initial certification exam, my guess is that the PASS RATE for physicians who have failed once is probably around 30-40%, and for those who have failed more than once the pass rate is likely 10-20%. Given these estimations, emails and testimonials like this one hold so much value for me:
I just wanted to let you know that I have passed my boards. I used your book and your questions and all your suggestions as well as peggy's method and it truly made a difference. You should know that your resources are quite valuable and you should be proud of what you have created.
I would totally hug you right now (don't mean to be inappropriate), just feel very grateful and happy 🙂
Suresh had failed the peds boards 3x prior to finding PBR and PBR Coaching.
Here’s another email:
“Put the test off because Click Here And Continue Reading…
In the PBR article called “Can I Improve Pediatrics In-Training Exam Scores For Myself? Or For My Program?” I released survey results from recent test-takers who took their pediatric boards in October. It was clear that the lack of “early board-focused preparation during residency” is a prevalent theme across pediatric residency programs across the country. While residents can hope that their program will do a good job of preparing them for the boards, residents can’t really expect this unless there’s a proven track record within the institution for success on the boards.
Keeping that in mind, I’m now writing a series of articles about how residents can take matters into their own hands to increase their residency in-training exam scores and potentially their chances of passing the boards as well.
Let’s start with 2 very important questions. Then, I'll give you 2 very simple recommendations that could set you on the right path starting NOW towards studying for the pediatric in-service exam and ultimately PASSING the pediatric boards!
According to a study published in the Journal of Pediatrics, the answer is YES! The study revealed that Click Here And Continue Reading…